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Our Story – SurePlate (TM) Products

Updated: Apr 24, 2019

From the creators of SurePlate™, the product was born out of necessity.

We have a SeaDoo™ Jetski which we launch and travel on waterways in our region. We do a lot of trailing and launching with our PWC from many of the public and private boat ramps in our area. We live in the Mid Hudson region of NY and travel often to places like Lake George, Great Sacandaga Lake and along the Hudson River, from Albany to NYC. In our region, we also travel to places like Candlewood Lake in Connecticut, Greenwood Lake in NJ, and Lake Wallenpaupack in Pennsylvania. Each year we look for a new waterway to visit.

We have a Karavan™ trailer that initially came with one of those cheap plastic injection molded license plate holders that attach along with the common standard DOT trailer lamp assembly. The holder worked fine for the first year. In the second year we found the license plate hanging on one screw, almost ready to fall off. The part had fractured around the fastener hole flange. We purchased another plastic injection version with reinforced screw flanges. Within a year, the plate was again hanging from one screw with the same problem as the first. Luckily, we noticed the hanging plate before it was lost. We decided to purchase a metal version, we figured metal was stronger. After the second year, just like the plastic version, the metal holder had failed, but this time our plate was lost. The metal rivets had corroded from exposure to the brackish water which is typical in the southern Hudson River.

Once the plate was gone here in New York, we were instructed to go to the police department and get a missing plate report. Once we had the report, we had to go to DMV to get a replacement plate. The total time and inconvenience were about two hours including fees for a new license plate. What a hassle!

Both metal and plastic holders suffer from forces and stresses caused by water rushing around the plate during ramp launching and retrieval. The cyclic reverse bending and stress on the plate causes eventual fatigue failure of the holder. In addition, the plastics become frail after repeated exposure to direct Sun light. Most plastics don’t do well under UV exposure from direct sun light, in addition, plastics don’t do well in cold temperatures, so license plate holders in northern climates tend to fracture prematurely.

With problems mentioned above, the idea for SurePlate was launched. We were looking for a tough flexible but semi rigid material that would not rust, fatigue fail, and would provide sufficient support to display the license plate. A happy balance had to be found for two competing constraints, stiffness vs. flexibility. The solution was found in using rubber, which is ideal for non-corrosive properties and flexibility. Rubber by itself was too soft and compliant, there was little support for the plate while moving. Eventually we found a multiply fabric reinforced neoprene rubber which had a perfect balance between flexibility and stiffness. The fabric reinforcement provided great tensile strength and high resistance to tearing. High tear strength prevents the holder from pulling away from the fasteners.

In addition to the strength properties, neoprene rubber has good resistance to UV exposure from direct sunlight, sustains mechanical properties in both low and high temperatures which far exceed typical outdoor environments from summer to winter.

Some may argue that the prices for SurePlate ™ products are significantly higher than the original metal and plastic holders; one could buy four units for the price of one SurePlate™ holder. It only takes one episode of losing your license plate to justify the cost. You get what you pay for. What is the value of cheap when the competitors are importing cheap metal products that corrode and plastic products that fatigue fail? The majority of SurePlate™ product costs are in the high-performance rubber material that is manufactured in the USA. SurePlate (TM) products are well worth the cost to prevent time, money and hassle spent on obtaining a lost plate police report and a subsequent trip to DMV. Isn't preventative action and the cost of SurePlate (TM) products worth 2 hours of your time plus DMV fees for a lost plate? For the price of two large pizza pies and a bottle of soda, you can skip the hassle and get long lasting security for your license plate!

Buy SurePlate ™ products to securely mount your license plate to your trailer/truck/RV and forget about it!

Support US manufacturing. Made in USA. US Patent No. 9,586,538.

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